We’ve all gotten so used to the speed and ease of email, texting and other social media that many of us rarely pick up the phone any more to communicate with people.
Don’t get me wrong.
I rely on social media for most of my business communications. I love social media. It allows me to get more done in a shorter span of time . . . sometimes.
But I’m as guilty as the next guy of neglecting to actually speak to my professional network.
I have a core group of colleagues whom I consider to be co-mentors. We share ideas and tips, and brainstorm ways to help each other become more successful.
Sometimes weeks will go by when I don’t make a personal connection with one of them.
I always find that, when I do reach out and set up a call with one of my co-mentoring buddies, I’m so much more pumped than if we’ve communicated via email.
Likewise in executive job search, making the time to speak with those closest to you in your professional network can make the difference between merely saying “hello” and “what’s new with you”, and truly connecting, with the potential to open opportunities for new leads (for both of you) and batten down a great job search tactic to land your next great gig.
Just as sending a hand-written, snail-mailed thank you note after a job interview trumps an emailed one, so does the effort and thought it takes to initiate an actual phone call.
Phone calls are becoming so much more infrequent that they’re almost a novelty, and can work to deepen the relationship.
I don’t suggest that you flip through your rolodex (manual or electronic) and try to schedule a call with everyone in your network. Select those closest to you, whom perhaps you’ve neglected to call in quite some time. The people you most trust and rely on. The ones who are always there for you, just as you’re there for them.
Skype makes these calls that much easier and, if you choose, you can make a video call, so you can see each other as you’re speaking. If both of you have Skype accounts, and cameras in your computers or devices, it’s a matter of clicking a button to connect you both via your computers. Skype to Skype calls are free. If the person you’re calling doesn’t have (and doesn’t want to have) a Skype account, you can pay a minimal annual fee to make Skype calls to land or mobile lines.
Give it a try. See if you’re not pumped by the experience, too!
Photo by tjscenes